FCC DTV deadline has passed

Often considerable tower modifications must be made before DTV antennas and feedline can be added.

December 1st has come and gone and many DTVs that should be on-the-air aren’t yet. Last spring, 772 stations were granted six-month extensions to complete their build out. Now approximately 600 have asked for a second six-month extension. The FCC has granted all of the approximately 230 request applications so far. Seventy-one stations were admonished in June for not doing all they could to complete their DTV installations.

A spot check of NAB and FCC records indicates that few if any (none were found) have met their December 1st target dates for operation. In June the FCC told these admonished stations that if they didn’t make the December 1st target fines could be levied and that initiation of a six-month process could commence in which the DTV CP holder would have to complete construction or have their CP revoked and their bandwidth auctioned off. A spokeswoman for the FCC indicated that the commission is busy reviewing extension applications and has not addressed what will happen to the stragglers yet. Currently there are 665 DTV stations on-the-air in 171 markets.

For more information visit www.fcc.gov.

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